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NSF International president and CEO Lawlor to retire; Sancha to take over

Industry News | February 17, 2022 | By:

NSF International president and CEO Kevan P. Lawlor will step down, making way for the Pedro Sancha era at the standards organization.

Photograph of NSF International president and CEO Kevan Lawlor
Retiring NSF International president and CEO Kevan P. Lawlor

NSF International of Ann Arbor, Mich., announced that president and CEO Kevan P. Lawlor will retire in 2022, and Pedro Sancha will become the next NSF International president and CEO. NSF is an independent organization that facilitates standards development, and tests and certifies products, including NSF 61-certified geosynthetics.

“On behalf of the board of directors, the leadership team and NSF’s 3,000 team members, we would like to thank Kevan for his impact and leadership over his 36 years with the organization,” says NSF’s board chair, Richard E. Rabbideau. “I am also excited to announce Pedro Sancha will join NSF as our next president and CEO. Pedro brings extensive global experience in the industrial and services industries, as well as the strategic and leadership skills needed to take the organization through its next chapter.”

About new NSF International president and CEO Sancha

“I am thrilled to join NSF at this important time in its history during such a significant time for human health. The pandemic has demonstrated how critical it is for our societies to count on independent, science-based testing, inspection and certification organizations such as NSF. With its world-class expertise in food safety, water quality, health sciences and sustainability, NSF is uniquely positioned to fulfill its mission of protecting and improving human health and the environment on a global scale.”

Pedro Sancha
Photograph of incoming NSF International president and CEO Pedro Sancha
Incoming NSF International president and CEO Pedro Sancha

Sancha joins NSF from Ecolab Inc. of St. Paul, Minn., where he was senior vice president and general manager of the Industrial Digital Group. In this role, he spearheaded the digital transformation of Ecolab’s $7 billion industrial group, with a focus on advanced Internet of Things, cloud-based analytics, artificial intelligence, machine learning, eCommerce and remote asset monitoring. Prior to this role, he led the Global Light Industries division of Ecolab and joined the organization as vice president of strategy and business development.

Prior to Ecolab, Sancha worked for Shell plc of The Hague, The Netherlands, where he was general manager for Europe, the Middle East and Africa, as well as serving in increasing roles of responsibility in Asia. He began his career as a business consultant with Arthur Andersen LLP of Chicago, Ill.

Sancha has master’s degrees in engineering from the Polytechnic University of Madrid and the École des Ponts Paristech, and a master’s of business administration from Harvard University.

Lawlor’s distinguished tenure comes to a close

“Kevan has played a significant role by bringing international prestige to NSF and led us to become a global organization at a heightened level,” says Rabbideau. “His leadership in our industry, and as a former chairman of the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), has helped governments, regulators, industry partners, customers and consumers by creating many health standards and independent evaluation services which are used throughout the world today.”

“I am grateful to have spent the past three decades with this wonderful organization and honored to have had the opportunity to lead it for the last 18 years,” says Lawlor. “I want to extend my sincere appreciation to our employees who are deeply committed to our global mission to protect and improve human health. I would also like to thank our customers, partners, communities and the board of directors for their ongoing support. What we have been able to achieve is nothing short of amazing, and I look forward to what’s next for this incredible organization.”

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